My Documenting Britain project is an exploration of remote communities in the north of Scotland. My interest is in the visual relationship between these settlements and their surrounding natural environment. I see this as a long-term project and hope that this work will not only be a study of landscape, but also highlight issues that these communities face.
The North-West Corner
Over the Christmas break I revisited the northwest tip of Sutherland - the villages of Durness and Kinlochbervie - looking to explore the human landscape of these remote communities as part of Northlands. I’ve been many times but not for a few years so it was good to be back. Each time I return I’m reminded just how remote this area is - a considerable drive of 1-2 hours to the nearest town of any size.
It’s the visual relationship between these communities and their natural surroundings that fascinates me. Much of the infrastructure of everyday life which blends into an urban setting is very obvious here, set against the dramatic Highland landscape.
My plan is to visit much of the north & west coasts (and islands) over the next couple of years (and hopefully Orkney & Shetland also), gradually building up a bank of images and seeing what develops from the work produced. I’m open to whatever approach feels right as the project progresses.
Here’s a few images from the recent trip: